Seeing a game end in a shootout can at times be tough, especially with so much on the line.

A team can dominate in regulation and continue their strong play into overtime, only to see their team lose on an individual play by an opposing player in the shootout. Well, the chances of that happening at future IIHF World Championships is going to be slim based on its new format. On Thursday morning, the IIHF announced that the tournament will now use a 3-on-3 sudden death format going forward. The new rule will be implemented for both round robin play and playoff action.

The new format will be applied as followed:

  • Preliminary round games: 5-minute 3-on-3 + shootout
  • Quarter-finals/semi-finals/bronze medal game: 10-minute 3-on-3 + shootout
  • Gold Medal Game: 20-minute periods 3-on-3 sudden-death


You’ve got to think a game will be solved in 3-on-3 play after 20 MINUTES of play.

While most fans would probably prefer to see a game end in OT, IIHF Competition and Coordination Committee Chairman Franz Reindl cited other reasons for the change.

The following is an excerpt from

“There are various reasons we can’t risk a long overtime game in the final. Arena facilities have to turn over quickly, often on the same night as the final, to accommodate new events coming in. There are also concerns from broadcasting and team management that have to be considered as well.”


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So hockey fans, what are your thoughts on the new rule?